‘Resting’ rather than ‘doing’ or ‘trying’ or ‘striving’ to adjust or replace or avoid or cling onto or get rid of the ever changing flow of jaggy or nasty or uplifting or discouraging or encouraging or regretful or painful or contented or scary or downright crazy thoughts feelings, responses and events around me.
It is a kind of not-doing. It is sunny outside. It is rainy. It is still, it is windy. I do not feel lonely, I feel lonely. I feel entertained, then boredom, a pain, then no pain. Noticing the tendency to contract away from any kind of pain at the drop of a hat. A lifetime of contraction to recover from.
Constant changing scenes internally and externally, which are the dynamic expression of Rigpa, and in it, not separate from it. Not separate from it is key. This mind likes to get busy sifting through all experience to determine what is acceptable and what is not, what is correct and what is not, what is intelligent and what is not, painful and not.
It is all the dynamic expression of Awareness which is perfect equanimity. Within the throws of this human intensity of experience there is the opportunity to take short moments all day long of remembering being in Rigpa. We never leave it, we are it. I forget this every few minutes!
I like this word Rigpa, it has fewer cultural reference points that could dilute the meaning than words or phrases in English like ‘open awareness’ or ‘oneness’ or ‘spirit’. It is there all the time, and noticeable in the spaces between thoughts, those pauses where alert awareness is present and thought is not. The thoughts keep on coming, and Rigpa remains there all the time, unmoved.
“Rigpa is a Tibetan word, which in general means ‘intelligence’ or ‘awareness’. In Dzogchen……rigpa has a deeper connotation, ‘the innermost nature of the mind’. The whole of the teaching of Buddha is directed towards realizing this, our ultimate nature, the state of omniscience or enlightenment – a truth so universal, so primordial that it goes beyond all limits, and beyond even religion itself.”
— Sogyal Rinpoche
And experientially how to navigate this dynamic changing picture? What I have been developing is a sense of ‘okayness’ with it all. It is all okay. Noticing all the judgements that determine what isn’t good enough, isn’t okay. Things resolve by themselves. I just need to rest and I know what to do next. No need to fret and worry.
To acknowledge the early experiences and cultural influences encouraging worry, a suspicion of danger lurking round every corner, a sense of not being good enough, fear of being shamed, of being found out to be an imposter. I also have a recurring judgement that all this self care is narcissistic. Old tapes being played over and over. These can be interrupted in an instant of breathing, pausing, remembering the backdrop to it all that we are. The waves and the ocean at the same time, inseparable.
Photo from last night’s walk.